Thursday, June 26, 2014

Pinball: by Santiago Ciuffo

Pinball by Santiago Ciuffo

I recently received my copy of "Pinball" by Santiago Ciuffo and was fairly impressed. It's a coffee table style book, with large glossy photos of older EM (Electromechanical) and early SS (Solid State) machines that are located in Argentina. While not too long on text (it includes a nice introduction on the state of the pinball hobby in Argentina and its history, in several languages), it does have some amazing photos, which span 95% of the pages within. These pictures showcase machines in relative chronological order, starting with several pictures dedicated to Bingo machines, then leading into shots of EM  pinball machines from the 50's-70's, and finishing with pictures of pins from the early 80's. The photos really showcase the art well. The pictures and their subjects seem to jump off the page. 

Having seen this book, I'm reminded of other pinball photo books, like Marco Rossignoli's many works, the books that Michael Shalhoub released, or the seminal tome that Roger Sharpe and James Hamilton released way back in the 70's. But in regards to those texts, Ciuffo's work here feels more like Sharpe's than the others. I feel this way because many of the images in the book also show the pins as part of a larger landscape or display: whether it be a game sitting by its lonesome in a stylish hallway (almost like a girl ready for her partner to go out on a night on the town), or as in another, showing the backglasses and heads of several older pins sitting together on the top shelf of a barn, looking like a bunch of old friends sitting on a porch talking about exciting days long past. Ciuffo captures the games in a larger scene, which is something Hamilton also pulled off in that earlier work. One difference though is that Hamilton was photographing games that at that time were new, fresh, in their prime. Ciuffo on the other hand, conveys in his photos, games that are old. That sense of age, of nostalgia, is, I believe, a core undercurrent in this book. All the pins showcased here are older (very few DMDs are featured), the pictures convey wear, having been played, having been enjoyed after many many years of faithful service. All the games in "Pinball" by Santiago Ciuffo show a type of patina, like the patina of a life, one that seems was very well lived.

So as for my verdict, I say GO GET IT! It's a wonderful piece of Pinball art, Ciuffo's photography is top notch, you won't be dissapointed! The author is an artiste and a definite pinball aficionado in our book!

I also want to say that if it weren't for the efforts of Jonathan Joosten and Pinball Magazine, the book would probably not be as easily available as it is, so  thanks Jonathan!

More Pictures!!!!!!


Ooooh a Miami Beach Bingo!!! (You can read more about Bingos HERE)


Glossy Photos

It's a great read!!!

Santiago Ciuffo also did a little Commercial for it that looks pretty neat!

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